What is Joe Biden's executive order on ghost guns?

PRESIDENT Joe Biden announced a plan to crack down on ghost guns in a press release on April 11, 2022.

Biden's latest executive order will aim to trickle down on gun violence and ghost gun kits that can be purchased without a background check.

What is Joe Biden's executive order on ghost guns?

President Joe Biden is cracking down on untraceable firearms, known as ghost guns, with a new law that will make it illegal to sell and distribute these weapons.

The press release says in 2021 alone, "approximately 20,000 suspected ghost guns reported to ATF as having been recovered by law enforcement in criminal investigations – a ten-fold increase from 2016."

The latest addition to Biden's goal will take buy, build, shoot kits that can be assembled in 30 minutes, off the streets.

These kits don't have a serial number and no license required, making it a popular weapon for violent crime.


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Biden also announced the new law will require "federally licensed dealers and gunsmiths twill be required to add serial numbers to all guns produced."

In addition to these new laws and requirements, Biden will be nominating Steve Dettelbach, US attorney in Ohio from 2009 to 2016, to lead the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).

The newly announced protocols will aim to take the unidentified guns and assign a serial number to them so they can be more easily traced.

“Ghost gun companies have been resistant to any regulations and it’s clear that they see their business model existing because of the legal loopholes they can exploit. They don’t want to compete with the gun manufacturers that have to follow regulations," David Pucino, deputy chief counsel of the Giffords Law Center told The Guardian in March.

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“(States and local governments) are using the tools at their disposal but the federal government needs to step in. The longer ATF delays, more ghost guns will be available and they will be used in more shootings," he said.

Senate majority leader, Chuck Schumer said in a statement that action needs to be taken immediately before "more people get hurt – or worse."

“It’s high time for a ghost gun exorcism before the proliferation peaks," he said, adding that these ghost guns are “too easy to build, too hard to trace and too dangerous to ignore."

How many mass shootings have there been in 2022?

There have been 119 mass shootings as of April 2022 since the beginning of the year, according to the The Gun Violence Archive.

A mass shooting is defined as a shooting in which four or more people were killed.

While ghost guns are not the dominant types of guns used in shootings across the country, New York City has recovered 109 ghost guns since January 1, 2022.

“It continues to be a problem," Eugene O’Donnell, a former NYPD officer and current lecturer at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York told CNN.

"You can’t trace them. In some cases it could mean not apprehending someone at all or it could raise the doubt about some cases where someone is claiming he’s not the shooter,” O'Donnell said.

How many ghost guns have been recovered?

The total number of ghost guns recovered has been growing in recent years, and the San Francisco, California police told CNN that of the 1,089 guns seized in 2021, about 20 percent of them were ghost guns. This number is up from one percent of ghost guns found out of those seized in the city in 2016.

Likewise, Washington, D.C. reported they had seized 400 ghost guns in 2021, up from 25 in 2018 and New York City police recovered 375 ghost guns in 2021, up from 17 in 2018.

The ATF reported from January 1, 2016 through December 31, 2020, they had seized approximately 23,906 ghost guns nationwide.

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NYPD Inspector Courtney Nilan told CNN ghost gun manufacturers “will sell you all of these parts or gun kits to make a fully functioning firearm with no background check, with no verification of who you are.

"All you need is a credit card. It doesn’t matter your age, it doesn’t matter your criminal record, and they will send you either the parts or a kit.”

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